Featured Article: A Judge’s Perspective
“If you ever want to learn what our future technology pioneers are doing, go to the next Capstone Design Expo at Georgia Tech. It will make you feel better about our newest graduates and engage you with a myriad of technological insights. I found that judging the set of six teams I was assigned to at the 2013 Capstone Design Expo was interesting and invigorating. My only regret in judging was that I did not get to see more of the student’s display which looked so fascinating…” Click to read more.
What Is Capstone Design?
Capstone Design is a series of courses offered to undergraduate students from all disciplines at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Students work in teams to design, build, and test prototypes with real world applications. At the end of each semester students showcase their efforts at the “Capstone Design Expo”.
The Capstone Design courses provide students the opportunity to work with real-world, open-ended, interdisciplinary challenges proposed by industrial and research project sponsors. They learn and apply the engineering design process: defining functional requirements, conceptualization, analysis, identifying risks and countermeasures, selection, and physical prototyping.
Student teams buy and fabricate hardware to create working, physical prototypes to see their ideas and calculations in action. By working in teams they develop leadership skills and group dynamics; dealing with scheduling conflicts, meeting weekly deliverables and deadlines; and communication among team members, project sponsors, and course instructors.
Teams attend lectures given by experts from Industry and Academia on topics including patenting, industrial design, manufacturing, market research and marketing, business funding, structure, governances, and ethics.
At the end of the semester, student teams display and pitch their inventions and marketability to a panel of judges, invited guest, media, and their peers, while competing for cash prizes. This is an excellent opportunity for sponsor’s to see how their project was conceptualized by the teams at the expo.